For most authors, their primary concern is to actually publish the book. While critical and commercial success is on their minds, many authors do not have a fluent understanding of how to market their books. And in today’s era of online digital marketing, those who can have their book websites optimized for search engines, clearly have the edge.

What is SEO?

As what we have discussed in the previous blogs, search engine optimization or commonly known as SEO is the process of making the necessary adjustments to your website, blogs, and the rest of your website activity so that they may be more relevant to your readers. Equally important is the fact that SEO is the standard principle that allows your site to be noticed by searchers. Today, the top three search engines are Google, Yahoo, and Bing. Google, the top search engine, has its algorithms closely monitored by SEO specialists in order to comply with the latest goalpost. The latest of which is the ‘Mobile-first’ indexing system which they introduced last March. This is why most author sites are designed to be mobile-friendly and mobile-optimized. For author sites, this is just one of the standards in order to rank higher in Google searches. The higher the ranking, the more site visitors or site traffic. This is just one of the primary goals of book marketing. And if you market your site and product well enough, you might end up gaining positive reviews from reputable review sites such as the Trustpilot Reviews.

How to Optimize an Author’s Site?

So, how does one optimize his or her site for a search engine? First, we need to understand that SEO is the most tedious aspect of maintaining a web site. It has two categories, the On-Page, and the Off-Page SEO. The former refers to the content and the HTML source code of a page. The latter deals the quantity and relevance of sites linking to your website. While of the aspects of SEO would require the expertise of an SEO specialist, the following are items you can perform to help your site optimized for search engine:

Keyword Research

Keyword research is the most basic task in SEO. Your keywords dictate how you will design your content, metadata, descriptions, and your site in general. Your keywords should match what your target users so that your content has a higher of being indexed in Google. These keywords must be present in your materials. Google Keyword Planner, KWFinder, Moz Keyword Explorer, the Keyword Tool, and SEMrush are some of the most effective tools for keyword research.

Provide Content

We repeatedly declare in SEO that ‘Content is King’. This means that content and whatever you write forms the backbone of your site. The content present in your site should be something that is fresh, original, and relevant. Just like your keywords, your content should match what your target audience needs.

Relevant Meta-Data

Because many authors do not have a background in SEO, they do not appreciate the value of meta-data. Metadata are the texts use to describe the site. It consists of the meta, title tags, headings, and the content used by Google to find the page. They are not visible in your seen but search engines see them in the source code. Your metadata, as well as your content, should be relevant with appropriate keywords, headings, and tags. Make sure to follow the standard appropriate wordcount- 66 words for Title Tags, 144 for meta descriptions, 70 characters for Title. Your meta descriptions should be interesting and concise to attract searchers.

Good User Experience

It is not enough that your site attracts visitors. Their visit must be pleasant and if possible, their experience would want them to visit your site again. This is called good user experience. More than a decade ago, Google started to include page loading speed as part of their page ranking system. The ideal page speed is less than 4 seconds. It means that most visitors move to other sites once it takes longer than 4 seconds for your page to load. One way to check your own site’s page speed is via PageSpeed Insights. If your site scores above 85 then you are in a safe position.

Proper Link Building

Google respects reputation and authority. Of course, providing great service is the high road in building your good reputation and establishing authority in your respective industry. For self-published authors who are relatively unknown and are yet to established their own brand, it is important to link building. But what is link building?

According to moz.com,

“Link building is the process of acquiring hyperlinks from other websites to your own. A hyperlink (usually just called a link) is a way for users to navigate between pages on the internet. Search engines use links to crawl the web; they will crawl the links between the individual pages on your website, and they will crawl the links between entire websites. There are many techniques for building links, and while they vary in difficulty, SEOs tend to agree that link building is one of the hardest parts of their jobs. Many SEOs spend the majority of their time trying to do it well. For that reason, if you can master the art of building high-quality links, it can truly put you ahead of both other SEOs and your competition.”

There are several ways to link build. Foremost is to establish good relationships with your audience and with other relevant sites. Another is to register your site in trustworthy directories. This is also commonly known as business listings. Leaving testimonials to other sites is also a way to establish a link. Starting a blog with SEO compliant-articles is one of the most effective ways to link build. It is also a great way to further establish your own reputation as a serious writer. Along with your own blogging efforts, you can also engage in guest posting. You can do this by providing content for another site under a similar and relevant industry. These are just some of the basic aspects of link building.

SEO Tools to help you optimize your author website

As of 2019, these are the top 10 SEO tools being used by SEO specialists in order to optimize sites that they handle. Hopefully, we can discuss them in the next article.

  • Google Search Console
  • SEMrush
  • Moz Pro
  • Google AdWords Keyword Planner
  • Varvy SEO Tool
  • Linkody
  • Ontolo
  • Hubspot’s Website Grader
  • WooRank
  • BuzzStream

ReadersMagnet offers publishing and book marketing services to authors who want their books to reach the broadest number of the target audience. You can contact ReadersMagnet Self-Publishing at their office number: (619) 354 2643 Toll Free Number: (800) 805 0762 Fax Number: (661) 338 1442 or email them at info@beta.readersmagnet.com for more details.

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